‘THE BLUE TOOTH’
Please feel free to comment on my review.
Cybermen with the Third Doctor, Liz and U.N.I.T.
This review is dedicated to the late Caroline John who played Liz Shaw in ‘Doctor Who’.
‘The Blue Tooth’ is the third ‘Companion Chronicle’ by Big Finish in ‘Doctor Who’. It stars Caroline John who reprises her role as Liz Shaw, companion to the Third Doctor in ‘Doctor Who’. This is a great audio adventure where Liz tells the tale of her and the Third Doctor facing Cybermen on 1970s Earth.
Like many ‘Companion Chronicles’, these are audiobooks read by one actor who played a companion from the TV series with a guest star playing a supporting character in it. This is one of the earliest ‘Companion Chronicles’ from Series 1 of the range to represent eras of the early classic ‘Doctor Who’.
In the case of ‘The Blue Tooth’, this story represents the Third Doctor era of ‘Doctor Who’ with Jon Pertwee. Caroline John was chosen to play Liz Shaw for this first Third Doctor story in the ‘Companion Chronicles’ range. I enjoyed Caroline reading this story as Liz, as she’s very engaging to hear on audio.
Liz Shaw made her first appearance in ‘Doctor Who’ in ‘Spearhead From Space’. ‘The Blue Tooth’ takes place during Season 7 of ‘Doctor Who’ but after ‘Inferno’. Liz narrates the events of this story after she left U.N.I.T. and the Doctor. This is the start of a long story of how she left in the first place.
This ‘Companion Chronicle’ was produced and directed by Mark J. Thompson who produced and directed all of the Companions Chronicles in its first season by Big Finish. Mark wrote, produced and directed the ‘Soldiers of Love’ CD series and he wrote and directed ‘TravelWise’ on VHS before the ‘Companion Chronicles’.
‘The Blue Tooth’ is by Nigel Fairs and is surprisingly a four-part adventure on one disc. This is unusual as most ‘Companion Chronicle’ stories are two-part adventures on one disc. ‘The Blue Tooth’ and ‘The Beautiful People’ of Series 1 are exceptions. The four episodes in both stories are shorter than usual.
As I said, Liz narrates this adventure after she left U.N.I.T. and the Doctor from Season 7 of ‘Doctor Who’ and is read in the first person. I enjoyed how Liz tells of an adventure she had with the Doctor during her time with U.N.I.T. and it adds more interesting insight to her character compared on TV.
I’m pleased Liz cherishes her memories of the Doctor at U.N.I.T. This story is of course set during the Doctor’s exile on Earth by the Time Lords in Jon Pertwee’s first season as the Doctor. I was dismayed the reasons for Liz’s leaving the Doctor weren’t recounted here. But more was still to come later on.
The main story of ‘The Blue Tooth’ is about how Liz took a day off from working with U.N.I.T. Liz decides to meet up with an old Cambridge university friend of hers called Jean. But on the day, they’re supposed to meet, Jean doesn’t turn up and Liz becomes concerned when going to find her.
I liked how the story begins with Liz solving the mystery about Jean’s not turning up to meet her, before the Doctor, the Brigadier and U.N.I.T. come along. The story gradually develops to involve a dentist, nasty Cybermats, blue teeth before it eventually goes into the Cybermen’s lair at the end.
This story features the only appearance of the Cybermen in a Third Doctor story by Big Finish. The Third Doctor never faced Cybermen in his era on TV. Why, I don’t know. But I’m pleased the Third Doctor gets to face them in this audio story and that they are the ones directly from ‘The Invasion’.
I was pleased that more background was given to Liz Shaw and her Cambridge University life. I like how she recounts her memories of Jean when they were friends at Uni. Nigel Fairs writes well for Liz Shaw in this adventure and this does have the feel of a U.N.I.T. from Season of ‘Doctor Who’ in 1970.
Caroline John reads this adventure wonderfully well as Liz. I was able to home in on her voice when she reads and performs as Liz and other characters in the story. She does well with getting the tone and mannerisms of the other characters as well as slipping back into her character as Liz Shaw here.
The Third Doctor is well-written by Nigel and well-performed by Caroline in this adventure. Caroline doesn’t do an exact impersonation of Jon Pertwee’s Doctor. But from working with him on the TV series, she knows so well and I liked those scenes when the Third Doctor talks back to the Cybermen.
I really liked Caroline’s impersonation of the Brigadier in this audio adventure, as she sounds like Nicholas Courtney from the TV series. The Brigadier’s must be easy to do for actors on audio in ‘Doctor Who’. It was also nice to hear Mike Yates and Sergeant Benton make an appearance in this.
Nicholas Briggs voices the Cybermen in this ‘Doctor Who’ adventure with Liz Shaw. I’m pleased that the Cybermen sound like the ones from ‘The Invasion’ as well as the ones from ‘Rise of the Cybermen’/’The Age of Steel’. I prefer those Cybermen as they sound more threatening than others.
As I said before, I liked how the Third Doctor confronts and talks to the Cybermen. Liz also relates how she experienced the fear and horror of meeting Cybermen and what they do to their victims. I like the way the Cybermen spoke in this audio, sounding logical and cold-blooded as they should be.
There are also Cybermats in this audio adventure. I could easily visualise the worm-like Cybermats when they’re attacking their victims, especially when they got Liz, Mike and Benton cornered at the end of ‘Episode Two’. There is something rather disturbing about these Cybermats in this audio tale.
The dentist aspect of this adventure is very disturbing. Liz pays a visit and has some injected into her teeth that is part of Cyber technology. It was horrific and graphic to listen to when Liz could feel the ‘blue tooth’ inside her mouth burrowing its way through and almost about to take over in the story.
I liked the last scene between the Doctor and Liz when they’re at her house and she’s recovering after her faint during the adventure with the Cybermen. The Doctor feels uncomfortable in explaining to her what happened, especially as he managed to get the ‘blue tooth’ out of her mouth.
There are sadly no CD extras to be found for ‘The Blue Tooth’. So no trailers or behind-the-scenes interviews, I’m afraid. This is one of the very early ‘Companion Chronicles’ in the range by Big Finish. They would get popular later on with more CD extras including trailers and interviews with the cast.
‘The Blue Tooth’ is another great ‘Companion Chronicle’ by Big Finish in ‘Doctor Who’ with Caroline John as Liz Shaw. I enjoyed Liz’s story of how she and the Doctor faced Cybermen in this adventure and how she began her tale of how she left U.N.I.T. I hope to hear more stories with Liz Shaw soon.
‘The Blue Tooth’ rating – 8/10
|The previous story
For the Third Doctor was
For Liz was
For the Brigadier was
For Mike Yates was
For Benton was
|The next story
For the Third Doctor is
For Liz is
For the Brigadier is
For Mike Yates is
For Benton is
|Return to The Third Doctor’s Timeline|
|Return to Liz’s Timeline|
|Return to The Brigadier’s Timeline|
|Return to Mike Yates’ Timeline|
|Return to Benton’s Timeline|
|Return to The Doctors’ Timelines Index|
|Return to The Companions’ Timelines Index|
|Return to Doctor Who Timelines|
|Return to Doctor Who|
|Return to Sci-Fi|